As a business consultant, I’ve probably heard every excuse in the book.
“I can’t!” “I don’t have enough money!” “I’m not ready!” “My assistant quit on me!” “My dog needs a cuddle!”
Some excuses are totally valid. Sometimes, yeah, you do need more training. Sometimes you do need to slow down. Sometimes you do need to hire a new right-hand person. I get it.
But there is one excuse that is — in my humble opinion — total crap:
“I’m too busy!”
And I know, because I used to whip out this particular excuse. A LOT.
For years, I would regale my friends, colleagues, family and strangers in the grocery line with tragic tales about how “busy” I was.
I would flip my long, sexy-sex hair (as my friend Nicole calls it) and sip my Starbucks latte while moaning about how I’m just soooooo busy and I just don’t have time for anything! while the other person nodded his or her head in wonder, totally impressed by my amazing “busyness.”
Or … so I thought.
The truth is, most people thought I was completely annoying.
They saw right through my pathetic “busyness” excuse.
I was completely detached from reality — and they were just being polite.
And so it went … for many “busy” years.
Until finally, one of my friends couldn’t take it anymore.
One day, in the midst of one of my oh-so-busy-pity-parades, she rolled her eyes and said:
“Seriously? Dude, you’re not Beyoncé. You’re not running a freaking country. What are you so bleeping busy doing?”
At first, her question sent me into a huff.
Um, EXCUSE ME?! Like I said, I’m super busy building an amazingly successful business! Duh!
I’m busy, like, checking Twitter to see … things!
And checking my email! A lot!
And reading newsletters! And stuff!
Also, helloooo?! I have a dog.
As the annoyance dust settled down, though, I realized:
Damn it. She’s totally right.
I was crazy busy … but I was “busy” doing all kinds of nonsense.
Consuming tons of content, but not creating much of anything.
Leaking energy and wasting time, left and right.
Chasing after the wrong opportunities, then wondering why I felt soooo drained, at the end of each day.
All of this “busyness” wasn’t cool, anymore.
And it was MY responsibility to correct it.
And again — before all you busy-bees start hurling angry tomatoes at your screens — I get that life can be genuinely busy, at times.
I get that certain responsibilities — like kids, or a partner or parent who needs extra help — can place extraordinary demands on your time.
But that’s all the more reason to be super honest with yourself about the nature of your “busyness” — and make sure that you’re investing your time, where it counts.
My plea, for anyone who is addicted to using the “I’m so busy!” excuse?
You won’t miss out on anything by giving up your honorable badge of “busyness.”
In fact, you’ll open up the door to a life and a business …
… that’s truly worth your time.